Get On Up

THIS IS A REPUBLISH FROM AUG 2, 2014

Do you know who the #1 Soul Legend was for many years…?

“Get On Up” is the sanitized Biopic of Soul Music Entertainer Mr. James Brown.

Don’t expect a story that is chronological. “Get on Up” jumps back and forth constantly. You must pay close attention. Director Tate Taylor does tie everything up in a neat package toward the end, but until that time it’s a confusing mess.

Actor Chadwick Boseman is electrifying. His portrayal of James Brown the entertainer was excellent. He has the dance moves, foot work and the splits down cold.

During this movie I was transformed back in time. I grew up with James Brown music. I still have all of the 45’s, LP’s and CD’s. The sound track on this movie is awesome. I was dancing in my seat the entire time…

It’s tough to do a Biopic of an entertainer. You have to piece the story together. I don’t believe that “Get On Up” gives us the complete story of James Brown, I believe it skims the surface.

If you are a fan of the #1 Soul Legend Mr. James Brown, then “Get On Up” should not be missed.

This is a 4 Star Movie!!

42

THIS IS A REPUBLISH FROM APRIL 13th 2013!!

“42” is the story of two men; The Great Jackie Robinson (Chadwick Boseman) and the Legendary General Manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers Branch Ricky (Harrison Ford)
Branch Ricky decided to take a grand stance on racism and prejudice by changing the game of baseball and hoping it would change the world.
In 1946 Branch decided to go after and get a man of color to join the Brooklyn Dodgers in Spring Training. He had been following the “Negro Leagues” and had an idea of the caliber of players that played. He sought after Jackie Robinson. Once he convinced Jackie Robinson to sign with the team for Spring Training, this signing put Ricky and Robinson in the line of fire with the media as well as the “Color Line” in Baseball and the World. The story unfolds from there…
“4 Stars” for “42”; Harrison Ford was masterful as Branch Ricky. From what I know of Jackie Robinson’s character I would say that Chadwick Boseman did an excellent job of portraying Jackie Robinson. The movie is very insightful, entertaining and educational. You don’t have to be a Baseball fan to see or like “42”, but it helps if you understand the game a little bit.
You will also learn a lot about Jackie Robinson as a man. He had great patience and courage.
“42” is a definite “Must See”.

This is a 4 Star Movie!!

Bloodshot

“Bloodshot” is based on the best-selling comic book of the same name. Vin Diesel is Ray Garrison a decorated Soldier who gets killed in the line of duty. Ray is brought back to life by the RST Corporation. Loaded with a lot of nano-technology in his veins Ray is stronger than ever and is able to heal quickly if injured.

Although Ray is not in complete control of his mind and that’s where the problems start. The RST Corporation can alter Ray’s memories at any given time. Ray does not know what is real and what isn’t, but he is determined to get to the bottom of the situation. The story unfolds from there…

There is no plot. No solid story, but tons of non-stop action and special effects. The Cinematography was on point! It’s a bit sad…I had high hopes for “Bloodshot”. I counted down the minutes to when I could leave the theater. Vin Diesel does a good job with what he was given, but he isn’t the only person in the movie.

“Bloodshot” is best viewed on Cable, Blu-Ray or DVD.

This is a 2 Star Movie!!

The Way Back

FINALLY…A decent movie!! I haven’t written a post in three weeks!!

Ben Affleck is Jack Cunningham who back in high school was a basketball superstar who could have been the next big thing in the Pros, but he walked away from it all.
Years later Jack has a chance to come back to basketball when his old Alma Mater reaches out to him asking him to come coach the struggling team. Jack is very reluctant, but his old principal is very persistent. The story unfolds from there…

“The Way Back” is a great story about life and its struggles. There isn’t much of a plot, but you get the gist of what’s going on. The story is moving and some parts are relate-able. Ben Affleck gives an excellent performance. His seriousness and sincerity are on point.

“The Way Back” is definitely a surprise to me. I did not know what to expect going in. The movie is definitely worth a look.

This is a 4 ½ Star Movie!!

The Photograph

“The Photograph” is a story about a famed photographer Christina Eames who unexpectedly dies and leaves letters to her estranged daughter Mae Morton (Issa Rae) and the man she loved, but never married.

After retrieving the letters and instructions from a safe deposit box, Mae finds herself on a journey that leads her to delve into her Mother’s early life and it sets up an unexpected romance between Mae and a star journalist Michael Block (LaKeith Standfield). The story unfolds from there…

You know they say “Love is Complicated” that rings true in “The Photograph”. The story is a back and forth novel unraveling piece by piece. As the pieces come together the story becomes more intriguing and includes a few surprises along the way. The movie has a good cast and will keep you entertained. Opening on Valentine’s Day was a good move for the “The Photograph”.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!!

The 92nd Academy Awards

I am a few days late with my commentary regarding the 92nd Academy Awards. I traveled for business this week and could not write until I got back home.

It’s been a couple of years since the Best Picture Winner was a movie I did not see, but I never heard of “Parasite” and I am not aware that it ever was shown at a theater in my area.

5 of the 8 Best Picture Nominees were movies I saw, “1917”, “Ford v Ferrari”, “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood”, “Little Women” and “The Irishmen” (This is on Netflix).

If you have Netflix I highly recommend “The Irishmen”

I did score on a few of the categories:

Brad Pitt – Best Supporting Actor – Once Upon A Time in Hollywood
Toy Story 4 – Best Animated Feature Film
Hair Love – Animated Short (I saw this short animated film as a lead in to The Secret Life of Pets 2)
“Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” scored on Achievement in Production

I am glad “Little Women” did not go home empty handed as it scored on Costume Design
“Ford v Ferrari” scored 2 statues, Sound Editing and Film editing
“1917” made off with 3 Statues, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects and Cinematography
Surprisingly “Bombshell” won for Hair Styling and Makeup

One of the best moments was when Renee Zellweger won the Best Actress Oscar for her role as Judy Garland in “Judy”
She definitely deserved that win!!

That wraps up the 92nd Academy Awards.

I highly recommend “Ford v Ferrari” and “Little Women”
If you like War Movies check out “1917”
If you are a Kid at Heart check out “Toy Story 4”
If you are interested in Judy Garland’s life check out “Judy(2019)”
If you are a Quentin Tarantino fan check out “Once Upon A Time in Hollywood”

I gave all of these movies 4 or 5 Stars!!

See You at the Movies!!

The Gentlemen

Matthew McConaughey plays an American expat by the name of Mickey Pearson. Mickey built a highly profitable marijuana empire in London. Word gets out that Mickey is looking to cash out of the business forever. This triggers plots, schemes, bribery and blackmail in an attempt to steal Mickey’s empire out from under him and his lovely wife. The story unfolds from there…

Plain and simple I think the movie is awesome! I was thoroughly entertained! My favorite character was Ray (Charlie Hunnam), who was Mickey’s right-hand man. He appeared quiet and unassuming, but was a “Bad Ass” when necessary.

“The Gentlemen” was never short on intrigue. The story continued to roll right up to the end. At times the movie was a bit bloody, but that is to be expected given the story and plot.

This is a Guy Ritchie production, you must pay attention so you do not miss anything because the story goes back and forth.

If you like your Crime Dramas with a small side of Comedy, I highly recommend “The Gentlemen”.

This is a 4 Star Movie!

Dolittle

Robert Downey Jr. sheds his Marvel Universe Super Hero persona to play Dr. John Dolittle, who is an eccentric doctor and veterinarian of Queen Victoria’s England.

After losing his wife seven years earlier, Dr. Dolittle became a hermit, hiding away from the public eye. His only companions are the animals that he previously cared for. He talks to them and plays with them.

A messenger from the Queen summons Dr. Dolittle when the young queen falls ill and no one is able to determine what is wrong. Once Dr. Dolittle diagnoses the symptoms the queen exhibits, he then goes on a journey to locate a cure. The story unfolds from there…

“Dolittle” is definitely not Robert Downey Jr’s best work. During most of the movie the dialog from Robert Downey Jr. is not understandable. There is some comic relief that comes from the animals, but there aren’t any other redeemable qualities about the movie. It seems like it was just thrown together with no thought about a plot.

Young children may find “Dolittle” entertaining, but the movie is not worth the price of admission. The paid critics did not like “Dolittle”. I should have skipped it.

This is a 1 Star Movie!!

Bad Boys for Life in AMC Dolby

I was not writing movie reviews back in 1995 when the first “Bad Boys” hit the big screen. In fact I can’t remember if I liked the first installment or not. I can however confidently state that I do in fact like “Bad Boys for Life”.

It’s been twenty five years since Mike Lowery (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) first became partners. Fast forward to 2020, Mike and Marcus get together for one last ride…

This installment of the Bad Boy franchise is really good. The movie is fun to watch from start to finish. There is a back story that is carefully laid out, but there is a hole in the plot that does not quite get filled. However that does not take away from the entertainment factor of the movie. There is plenty of action, crazy car and motorcycle chases, but brace yourself…Things do get bloody. The cinematography is on point. The comic relief is alive and well.

I recommend “Bad Boys for Life” for some fun entertainment during this MLK Day Holiday weekend.

This is a 3 ½ Star Movie!!

Just Mercy

“Just Mercy” is a painful reminder that our Legal and Judicial Systems continues to have flaws although some progress has been made. Based on a true story “Just Mercy” takes you through the intensity of Walter McMillan (Jamie Foxx) being in prison and on death row for a crime he did not commit.

Lawyer Brian Stevens (Michael B. Jordan) who works for an organization that fights for citizens who can’t afford legal representation takes on Walter’s case and eventually goes all the way to the Supreme Court to seek justice. The story unfolds from there…

“Just Mercy” is executed brilliantly. The movie is understated while getting to the point. Things do get a bit emotional but that is expected given the subject matter.

Jamie Foxx and Michael B. Jordan are excellent together. Will “Just Mercy” get an Oscar nod? Only the Academy knows. I think the performances of Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Foxx definitely deserve some consideration.

If you can stand to feel anger, sadness, fear and jubilation all in two hours and 16 minutes, I recommend “Just Mercy”.

This is a 4 Star Movie!!